This is just a very quick update to let people know what happened yesterday and to thank all of those who participated in this operation.
Here is a link to the video
First and Foremost I would like to thank John Layman for lending us his 32 ft. Sport Fisher Amistad. Without which this operation would have been up the creek! Picture at left are Bud Smith, Chip White, John Layman and our two little helpers Andre and J.D. I would also like to thank Brian on Margarita 3 for going out and looking and a special thanks goes out to, Rich, Jeremy Jeff and Bill Hilliker who were the boys on the Sport fishing boat La Vida Rica who finally spotted the whale and called us up. We had actually given up for the day and were about 7 miles from San Carlos when we got the call that the whale had been found 27 miles out so we turned around and hauled ass back out there. The Hilliker Family on La Vida Rica stayed with the whales and turtles until we arrived which was crucial and if it had not been for a good box cutter they had on board it would have taken us a lot longer than it did to free the Calf. I will post a video as soon as I can but in the mean time here are some pictures.
Also special thanks go out to Harry and Nancy Lehrs on “The Greek” who originally reported the Whale entanglement, and to Jack and Sue on Border Bandit who reported the incident to me and who were also out there looking as well and working as a relay, for we might actually have missed the call in from La Vida Rica if it were not for Jack!!! This was truly a team effort and without all the help I would have never got the images, which I might say are very dramatic and may very well end up on National T.V. here in Mexico. It is not every day that you have everything fall into place and are able to capture images such as these which happens all to often here. I can’t wait to write the script for this one, it is really a interesting story to tell.
Thanks Again everyone!!!
I am sorry I don’t at the moment have a better picture of the guys from Vida Rica. They had a good underwater camera as well and I hopefully will hook up with them and get all their names so we can give them the credit that they deserve!!!
Here you get an idea of how extremely entangled this Calf was. Its entire tail is covered in a drift net almost as if someone had gift wrapped it. This was the toughest part of the net to remove. As you look off to the right you see that the net stretches down and leads off to the Adult female who was still very strong and towing the huge mass of gill net baby and marine turtles with it.
This was the mass of net leading from the Calf to the Adult Female, to get this shot I actually put the net between my legs so I could hold the camera steady and shoot the image. It was like riding a bucking bronco. For this reason we choose to release the Adult first and unfortunately we were not able to completely remove the net from her tail but I am quite sure she will be able to survive. She will however have have to trail a small bit of net behind her. As much as I wanted to it would have been almost totally impossible and extremely dangerous to completely remove the small buoys that were attached to her.
Full shot of Calf